Miko, a 130-pound loggerhead turtle, is a new rescued resident at The Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum. The museum’s new rehabilitated animal resident is now living happily in the Gulf Stream Aquarium exhibition.
The turtle was rescued by staff at Gulfarium in the Florida Panhandle near Pensacola for ingesting fishing gear. They rehabilitated the turtle and released it three times. The third time she was moved to the East Coast of Florida, but the turtle made its way back to the Panhandle and was a return patient once again for eating fishing gear. The Florida’s Fish and Wildlife Commission (FWC) deemed that the turtle could no longer be released into the wild and so Frost Science will now be caring for it.
Get to know more about Frost Science’s new marine resident:
Loggerhead turtles are fully marine turtles living in the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian oceans as well as the Mediterranean Sea. They can live up to 67 years reaching 375 pounds. Unlike green sea turtles that eat mostly seagrass, the loggerhead is primarily carnivorous feeding on shellfish and other invertebrates.
Loggerheads are listed as threatened species and protected by the Endangered Species Act in the United States. The greatest risk facing these turtles is loss of nesting habitat due to development, nighttime lighting of coastal areas disorienting the baby turtles when they hatch, poaching of sea turtle nests and bi-catch in commercial fishing.